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Living Myth

Mosaic presents Living Myth, a podcast with Michael Meade, renowned mythologist and storyteller. Meade presents mythic stories that offer uniquely insightful and wise ways of understanding the current dilemmas of the world we live in. Living Myth proposes that genuine solutions to the complex and intractable problems of our world require both transcendent imagination and cohering, transformative narratives.
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Now displaying: January, 2021
Jan 27, 2021

This episode of Living Myth focuses upon two contrasting meanings of myth, one being a false narrative and the other as a genuine myth. On one level, myth involves things that can be proven false as when people say that something is “just a myth.”  On a deeper, more meaningful level, myth means “emergent truth,” the learning of transcendent truths that can alter both our vision of the world and our immediate understanding of life.

 

Both the false myth and the genuine myth use the elements of narrative and symbolism to present their core stories. One difference between them is that false myths aim to divide people and turn them against each other, while more universal myths reveal underlying truths that serve to bring people together through greater imagination and deeper understanding.

 

In many ways, we are in the crux of a growing tension between the two levels and contrasting meanings of myth. The current moment involves the coming together of dangerous false myths in the form of the Big Lie and the Lost Cause. The Big Lie involves the false story line that Donald Trump won the recent election, only to have it stolen from him. The Lost Cause involves the weaving together of false narratives about the reasons for the Civil War with symbols of Christianity and the false myth of White Supremacy.

 

Those who commit to a big lie or a false myth can rarely be persuaded by the “facts of the matter.” Their commitment is not based on facts; almost the opposite, the blind belief at the core of false myths is based upon a determination not to experience a common reality. Thus, the antidote to the big lie or a false myth involves not just the facts, but the evocation of more enduring and inclusive narratives and symbols of unity and renewal that are the deepest heritage of our shared humanity.

 

Thank you for listening to and supporting this podcast.  You can further support this podcast by becoming a member of Living Myth Premium.  Members have access to the full archives of over 290 episodes, receive a 30% discount on all live events, courses and products and receive 3 bonus episodes each month, including regular live Q&A events with Michael Meade.  You can learn more and become a member at patreon.com/livingmyth.  As always, you can further support this podcast by leaving a review on iTunes and sharing it with your friends.

 

On behalf of Michael Meade and the whole Mosaic staff, we wish you continued well-being, protection and deep community connection during this period of great challenge and transformation.

Jan 21, 2021

This episode of Living Myth begins with the roots of the word inauguration, which Michael Meade traces back to “an installation and consecration” that happens when the “omens are favorable.” In ancient times, the date for an investiture would only be chosen after signs indicated an auspicious moment for a new beginning.

 

The modern world runs on fixed schedules that typically ignore the subtleties of omens and auguries, leaving us looking for auspicious signs within pre-scripted programs. When it comes to inaugurating a new administration amidst a tragic pandemic and widespread uncertainty, the signs and symbols may have enhanced importance.

 

Beginning with the words "to heal, we must remember," Meade reflects upon the memorial ritual held the night before the formal inauguration began. The symbolic lighting of 400 lamps to honor the loss of over 400,000 souls to the coronavirus presented the kind of healing moment the soul of the nation needs. For many ancient people, the moments “between sundown and dusk” were considered auspicious and symbolic of a time when one thing can turn into another. In that sense, acknowledging our shared losses and wounds makes a path to healing more possible. In the end, what brings us together and makes unity possible is not simply our shared history, but rather the recognition of our shared woundedness and the stirring of the deep longing in each human soul to find healing and pathways to wholeness and renewal.
 

Thank you for listening to and supporting this podcast.  You can further support this podcast by becoming a member of Living Myth Premium.  Members have access to the full archives of over 290 episodes, receive a 30% discount on all live events, courses and products and receive 3 bonus episodes each month, including regular live Q&A events with Michael Meade.  You can learn more and become a member at patreon.com/livingmyth.

 

On behalf of Michael Meade and the whole Mosaic staff, we wish you and your loved ones continued well-being, protection and deep community connection during this period of great challenge, change and transformation.

Jan 13, 2021

Beginning with an inspired interpretation of The Second Coming by W.B. Yeats, Michael Meade addresses how “anarchy was loosed upon the world” and “what rough beast” came round in the violent insurrection at the U.S. capital. Besides the sea of red MAGA hats and the rag tag array of military outfits and gear, the riotous display of symbols emblazoned on flags, banners and clothing bespoke a confusion and collusion of movements and purposes.

 

As the lines between fans and fanatics, between anger and madness were obliterated, one message that did come through was that we have now entered a more desperate, dangerous phase of collective life.

 

Meade states that: “Anyone who understands the deep human need for meaning and truth could intuitively know that attacking truth must eventually lead to attacking life itself. Facing this kind of zealotry, fanaticism and terrorism requires understanding the psychological dynamics of dissociation from one's regular identity and possession by unconscious resentments and floods of raw emotion.”

 

Something is trying to be born, but it cannot be born of false certitude or blindly blaming others for troubles we all share. It cannot be born of hate or abject cruelty.  It cannot be born of terrorizing people or destroying the symbols of democracy.

 

Thank you for listening to and supporting this podcast.  You can further support this podcast by becoming a member of Living Myth Premium.  Members have access to the full archives of over 285 episodes, receive a 30% discount on all live events, courses and products and receive 3 bonus episodes each month, including regular live Q&A events with Michael Meade.  You can learn more and become a member at patreon.com/livingmyth.

 

On behalf of Michael Meade and the whole Mosaic staff, we wish you and your loved ones continued well-being, protection and deep community connection during this period of great challenge, change and transformation.

Jan 8, 2021

“An old psychological idea states that if we do not consciously face our inner conflicts, then those conflicts will be lived out in the world as fate.” Michael Meade considers the recent riot in the nation’s capital, the fragility of our institutions and the growing tragedy of coronavirus fatalities as elements of a collective fate that we must witness. If many of the roots of our collective conflicts and traumas can be traced through history, Meade proposes that the way to both survive the current disorders and help heal our many wounds requires turning to mythology for wisdom and guiding images.

 

This episode of Living Myth ends with an appeal from a wise American poet: “…though we could fool each other. We should consider less the parade of our mutual lives gets completely lost in the dark. It is important for awake people to stay awake, or a breaking line may discourage us all back to sleep. The signals we give each other yes, no, or maybe should be clear. For the darkness around us is deep.”
 

Thank you for listening to and supporting this podcast.  You can further support this podcast by becoming a member of Living Myth Premium.  Members have access to the full archives of over 285 episodes, receive a 30% discount on all live events, courses and products and receive 3 bonus episodes each month, including regular live Q&A events with Michael Meade.  You can learn more and become a member at patreon.com/livingmyth.

 

On behalf of all of us at Mosaic, we wish you the touch of grace, the sense of gratitude and shared moments of wholeness in this new year.  We are grateful for the work you do in the world and for your interest in and support of our work.

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